Owing to the Thanksgiving Holiday, I have not spent as much time on the Prayerbook Project as I would have hoped. I knew that to start the Advent Season that I would want to post the prayers for the Immaculate Conception Novena. All of the blogposts are already written, but I thought that it might be more fun for all of you who read this to introduce the prayers day by day.
I have thought about posting a Christmas Novena as well. It is still very much under construction, but it can certainly be issued soon. The difficulty is the Directory of Popular Piety requested that this particular Novena be an expansion of the prayer of Vespers (adding in the "O" Antiphons, expanding the intercessions, using incense). In theory this sounds easy, but one would need to account for all the possible psalms that could fall on all the possible days. Such would be difficult in the prayer book iteslf, but might be handled in an annual booklet.
The solution from A Prayer Book of Catholic Devotions was simply create something perhaps inspired by Vespers. It starts with a hymn, omits any psalms, then proceeds with a reading, the O Antiphon, Magnificat, Litany of Loreto, and concluding prayer. I understand the temptation to do something of the sort, but I don't think that it would suffice. Of course, there is simply praying (reciting or singing) the O Antiphons, followed by the one Our Father, one Hail Mary, and one Glory be. While I will certainly include this option, especially for families, it seems to me that there should be something more substantial for parishes.
I don't yet know how to solve this problem. I will, however, have to find an answer soon. Stay tuned!